When we first heard the news that the top 11 on “American Idol XIII” was going to be performing songs from the movies, it was pretty easy to let out a collective groan. This is a theme that has been done to death, and the odds of there being anything new or particularly notable are down significantly. Somehow, we managed to escape the week without a rendition of “I Have Nothing” from “The Bodyguard.”
In hearing the theme for the top 10 performance show, we’re feeling much more revealed that there is something a little more interesting being presented to us: Songs that are actually from the past three or four years. The theme is specifically “Top 10 Sings Top 10,” and in order for a song to qualify, it has to be a top ten hit that was released after 2010. This is by and large great news, since it forces contestants to think of ways to make songs different and interesting that may be already ingrained in the memories of so many.
Also, this is one of those themes where the playing field should be pretty level. Sam Woolf and Alex Preston can go for something that is in the singer / songwriter vein, Jessica Meuse can find something that is indie rock / blues, and Dexter Roberts can go to some sort of modern country hit. It is strength versus strength, which to us is much more interesting than a theme that tends to favor one contestant over the other. (We never really dug it in the past when a non-country artist was performed to sing country, or when a country artist had to do the music of Motown.)
No matter what happens the rest of the way, the remaining contestants can at least celebrate the fact that they are all now a part of the “American Idol” tour, which will carry them across America this summer. They just better hope that the ratings increase for the show the rest of the season, just so that there are some people in the seats this summer. (Attendance for the season season’s tour was far from great, to say the least.)
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